The last successfully completed shadow fork of the Ethereum blockchain signalled the readiness for PoS migration via The Merge
Ethereum (ETH) developers confirmed the successful completion of all planned test shadow forks required for the highly anticipated blockchain upgrade to the proof-of-stake mechanism, The Merge.
The most significant upgrade in the history of Ethereum, The Merge will unite the existing execution layer of Ethereum (the Mainnet) with its new proof-of-stake consensus layer, the Beacon Chain. After The Merge, the Beacon Chain will be the consensus engine for all network data, including execution layer transactions and account balances.
The event is expected to take place within Q3/Q4 2022. As part of the final upgrade, the community needs to update their Ethereum clients.
The full transition to a proof-of-stake mechanism sets the stage for future scaling upgrades including sharding. Besides, The Merge will reduce Ethereum’s energy consumption by ~99.95%.
Shadow forks test synchronization assumptions, practice running nodes, deploy smart contracts and test the infrastructure to ensure network safety during permanent upgrades. Ethereum started such testing in April 2022. After six months, Mainnet-Shadowfork-13 — the last planned shadow fork — was completed successfully.
Should you prepare for the Ethereum Merge?
As a user or holder of ETH or other digital assets on the Ethereum network, you do not need to do anything with your funds or wallet before The Merge. Nevertheless, crypto traders and investors should pay close attention during the Ethereum upgrade to avoid service downtime.
Although no major disruptions should take place, experts expect some volatility. Moreover, you should be on high alert for scammers trying to take advantage of users during this transition. In general, the success of The Merge would be highly dependent on community support.